Caring Mother with Selfish Adult Children

by Sherry
(West Palm Beach, Florida)

I was a protective loving Mother. I raised two children on my own. Both are hardworking and professional adult children. I have a son and a daughter and if you asked them about their childhood both would say that they had a good one, filled with love and kindness.

Recently, I became ill and had to be hospitalized for a short period. Lucky me, I have not been ill or even had a flu or colds in thirty years. So you can see it was not an everyday event.

My 24 year old son hardly saw me and my 27 year old daughter was too busy to even ask me how I'm doing. I was off from work for two weeks, feeling better (Thank God) but not one time did they genuinely show any concern. I did write them both an email nothing nasty and it was loving, but they never brought up this issue.

They both abandoned me in my time of need. Why? and how do I treat them now when they showed no concern for me?

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Upset mum
by: Anonymous

I'm in absolute bits with my grown up daughter of 25 , we've had a rocky mother daughter relationship where she moved out at 16 to live with her X boyfriend , I was devastated she left , that was up and down then of talking not talking she then fell pregnant at 21 to my beautiful granddaughter relationship with my daughter was ok ish I then found out when my granddaughter was nearly one that the bf was in prison for 18 month she only told me 6 months down the line when I kept asking questions to where he was etc.

Her reply after telling me was she didn't want me to worry etc ( later telling her sister she thought I'd want to tell her wot to do and takeover ) long story short we were informed few years she met now partner had another daughter , myself and my husband had been trying to see them all in beteeen work etc on weekends that we don't work she kept saying she was busy , so I said Could we pop over Before u go out ??

No your put us off getting ready was her reply okay could u come to ours then on your way back from your days out no cause girls have a bedtime her reply I took this for a while til the final straw and I said hang on we want to see the girls as well ( it's always his side they see etc ) that didn't go down well.

It then got into a row where she's said apparently we don't hell enough with girls she's going back to when her first daughter was little , we didn't help she said , she's called me selfish vile spiteful cause she reckons they would visit us a long time ago and we beva used to them (trying to say we work funny hours and when ever we try u were always saying your busy and we can't cum over ). She will not sort the row out telling my other daughter she's had enough now of us.

It's my granddaughter Christening today and I really don't want to go as not feel welcome cause it's all her partners side there.

Strength in solidarity
by: Anonymous

I came here looking for answers & thanks to all you folks who have posted, I have my answers. I am lucky in as much as my two adult daughters aren't yet as bad/selfish/entitled as many of the adult children mentioned here.

But I can see that my girls, are on their way down this path. Like another commenter, I have some fear for the future. So I am going to take the advice given.

I am going to concentrate on me, building a safe future for myself with loving reliable caring friends around me. I too gave as much love as I could to try and compensate for an estranged useless father.

I have given complete support to them both in every avenue of their lives and put my own needs in second position, because.........I thought that's how to show love - the opposite of what I received from my own parents.

One of them can't spare 3 minutes to send a text asking how I am, (and she knows I won't push her into a lengthy text conversation), & the other can't be bothered to walk a 3 minute journey to my house to visit.

Oh, I won't go on talking about the hurtful things they do. Not quite as bad as some, but enough to really hurt me and make me wonder, and sometimes cry.

Like another poster said, " I've done my job, if they can't do theirs, then so be it. Time for me to move on. Good luck all, stay strong.

Detach with Love
by: Anonymous

When we all cannot afford counseling when needed, God love these websites to help people who are in pain for whatever reason.

There seems to be a common thread with all of these correspondences and tho very sad it has become very common. I have read a book on detaching from individuals who are toxic in our lives.

The advice given from all of these is simply " Start enjoying your life, accept what is and realize this is it, only one time around, try to make a good time.

I will never understand giving my all as a parent and having to live through selfishness in my adult children, but thanks to a great suggestion from a therapist on learning to detach ( not easy) but the only way. It has helped tremendously.

So to all of you are going through this please love yourself even more and try to feel some joy everyday.......Peace

Thank god for sharing...
by: Anonymous

I feel I can breathe I've been going through hell with my adult children since I broke up with their dad ...they just hate me and tell me so ,they are so underhanded and make me feel like a outsider in my own family ...I needed to know I'm not alone as I was in a very dark place of late ...thank you everyone for sharing your very painful lives with difficult adult children ...take care ...

Keep yourself busy
by: Anonymous

I was a single parent for most of my son's life so I understand where you're coming from. I also have a selfish son. I'm happy to hear that you're feeling better now.

If I were you, I'd ignore them and just focus on making yourself happy. If you can, take cruises and make new friends. If you can, move abroad for a year or two to teach.

I'm about to move and frankly speaking, I don't think much about my selfish son. He's also a college graduate and a professional. I struggled for him. He met a rude young girl and within 2 weeks of meeting this girl, he allowed her to be rude to me. That, I will never forgive.

Just because you are a mother doesn't mean you have to put up with bad behavior from adult children. I've moved on with my life and focus more on myself than anything else. Life is too short, be happy,stay focused, stay healthy. Wishing you all the best.

Adult Children and Negative Behaviors
by: Anonymous


You did your job. If they cannot do theirs, then so be it.

Welcome to the club. Now, take the best care of yourself, more than ever. Live for you, and enjoy yourself. Let every day be an experience.

Time to breathe fresh air
by: Anonymous

I am so encouraged to find that it is not me facing selfish children - all four of them. I could go on about their behaviour but from reading through it's common.

Time to step back, take in some fresh air and think about the money we will save by turning the generosity tap off. No need to discuss why or email my sorrow. They are adults and making choices - just not the same as ours.

Lift up your head you terrific parents - we know what we have done and given so time to change stations and listen to sweeter music

Too Much
by: Anonymous


For the woman with four children, and stores.
I believe you have won the prize.

I have never heard such tones, sadness and punishment to one's parents. I thought that my children were selfish, and the rest of words.

I have called threatened to call the cops on my son when he mouthed off me at my front door. I really believe you need the help of professional people.

From my experience, if someone is one drugs, and such, the possibilities are endless what sort of behavior could take place. Don't you think that you are at risk for major situations?

Self doubt
by: Anonymous

20 years ago my adult children and grandchildren enjoyed me and loved me and we had so much fun, Their friends envied them and I was often told what a great parent I had been.

Now they are all "successful" happy and children grown I am now redundant. If I say anything will be thought of as moaner and have guilt calls and visits. No win situation. Into self doubt about myself yet have so many other young friends that choose to hang out with me.

They tell me I am wise, funny, and insightful, yet my my own adult kids and grids make me feel the opposite.why.

Parents who forget themselves!
by: Anonymous

I can relate to all of this. I was a single parent and gave my all to my daughter. She was partly disabled from the age of 10 months to around 7 years.

I went through hell all my life with my own parents ,they were never there for me, so decided to give my all to my only daughter and all she gave me in return was hell, pure hell.

Her father rejected her and blamed me, yes she has abandonment issues, but suppose the majority of us have if we dig deep inside of us.

The here and now is she is 29 years and lives away from home since the age of 18 years due to living with a lad whom she met on the net. She is no longer with him ,but our relationship has gone from close to a text from time to time.

I haven't seen her in 5 years, but should be use to it by now but it still hurts, mainly because I sacrificed my life for her. But now I am learning to give all of that to myself hard but getting better.

by: Anonymous

I say, to hell with these adult kids and the high horse they rode in on!! I absolutely refuse to care about anyone that I gave life to and birthed into this world.

We loved them enough to give them a good upbringing.How many times have we loved them through all of their ugliness and nastiness. If your kids cannot appreciate what you have done for them and the fact that you are still tolerating their sorry arse...let them go!!!

Life is too short and you got more years behind you than ahead of you! Let the grand kids go too, they are a package deal. Its like waiting for a bus that's never gonna come cos the kids on the bus and the parents are driving it!

All your going to do is end up with a broken heart that can't be mended. You got to move on. Let em go, find a way to empty your mind through counseling if necessary.

This is about you, your life, your health and happiness. Its senseless to give them any more of your kind heart. Once you walk away, don't look back!! When they can show 100% that they are worthy of your love and respect, then you decide, until then keep it moving.

They need to be truly honoured to call you mum or dad!! many kids would love a mum/gran like you, find people to fill your heart with joy, THEY are waiting. x

Trust yourself, you are true.
by: Anonymous

I'm going through it too. my advice, and indeed what I am doing is ignoring her and focusing on me for a change. That's why this has happened, cos i put the kids before me.

There's is nothing else you can do! Get help with the emotions and when you are in a good place, they may well be back sniffing around cos you've not been in touch. By that time you will be strong enough to decide whether they are good enough and respectful enough to call you Mum or Dad. it'll all work out, trust yourself x

It's all about me
by: Resolved

Going through this myself. Have given my daughter enough to build a home, and have Invitro treatments. On vacation and asked to borrow shampoo and she said she only brought enough for herself.

Great advice--living for myself from this point forward. Love them but I see a side that gives me a glimpse into my future as I age and it terrifies me. Have to rearrange the way I think about things from this point forward.

What about husbands?
by: Anonymous

There are wonderful wives that care for their children, for their homes and for their husbands and husbands do not appreciate them.
About mothers with children that cause them sadness when It should be love, this Is my advise. If you gave so much do not give anymore, instead give time to yourself, think of you first, second and third.

Love yourself, look for something fun to do. Yes, meet people and be happy. Do not suffer any longer enough Is enough. Do not be a volunteer for abuse.

Same thing with husbands: If they do not appreciate you for all that you do Is time to change the pattern. Go out, do not cook for him and leave the house a mess. If he does not care Why should you.

I know many bad mothers with wonderful children.
Same thing about good wives.
Yes life Is unfair, but Is our responsibility to make It fair and be happy.

by: Dr. Shi

I am so sorry to hear all this. However, as you know, you are not the only one going through this sort of behavior from their grown up children.

From what I recalled, I did the same with my three children. Pretty much, I gave them the best part of my younger life. I had expectations of them becoming good people. They are good people, really good to others, but not to their parents.

They think we are rich, and not letting them have money, and help them out when they are in a bind.

The fact is, they get help, but they want our blood now. My youngest son told me that he is living his life, as if, I was dead. My daughter writes me abuse emails, that would make any mother heart hurt. Thus, we go back and forth. I will not have her disrespect me.

When she sees me, she barely have time to spend with me. She is always busy. I recently wrote her, telling her that what she is doing is abuse, and it was the last time. We are not on talking terms right now. My oldest has his ways of not calling, and when his wife does, he is offended. He is always needy.

I could go on, and on of their disrespect, lack of care and ungratefulness. I am so disappointed in them. However, I dared not say so or else they would stop talking to me. They have done so for silly reasons in the past.

I have made peace with myself that I have a right to live a good life, and who want to share it with me fine. If my children always refuse themselves to me, then so be it. I am young, able bodied and a good person. The world is filled with good people.

Thus, I came to believe it is the way of the new generation, both, X & Y. Please note that there is no shame in speaking about your hurt. I am so sorry. Please keep being strong and take care of yourself.

I have selfish adult children, too
by: Anonymous

I read these posts about selfish adult children, and it hits too close to home. I am probably the reason, I probably spoiled them too much. I was divorced, and always felt guilty that they didn't have a "white picket fence" home life.

I can remember my Mom saying, "you will be sorry" about being too generous with kids. I never thought they would be so disrespectful and unappreciative. But, they are.

Apparently, I wasn't the good mother I thought I was. I did try very hard. My youngest daughter said she has no happy memories of her childhood. That just breaks my heart.

Selfish Adult Child
by: Anonymous

I too have a selfish child. My older daughter is a state assistant attorney general. When I am with her, she snaps, makes assumptions about things I say that are not true. She appears to have very high anxiety, but that does not make her nasty remarks any easier to take.

She invited me to come to a court case of hers. At lunch time she insisted that I buy her lunch even thought she makes much more money than I do.

I do understand the feeling of mothers who feel slighted.

I too have adult selfish children
by: Anonymous

At least your children are doing well for themselves. Mine are lazy. I live in a big beautiful home. My house is dirty because I work a lot and have a bad Back.

My oldest son is so selfish even when I tell him "you hurt me and I'm crying" he will still try and prove his point instead of just saying he is sorry.

Example, I own a few retail stores, I gave my son the location. He wanted me out ASAP. In my mind I was going to stay another month to get rid of a lot of product. He wasn't having it. He pushed me everyday so I finally moved.

Because the move it was rushed, I didn't have time to think. I was super sick trying to move my things out because he said he needed it ASAP.

I left some mess that him being young could easily spend a few hours cleaning. I had some expensive things like a sign, cameras, microwave water cooler, etc. All of what I could use in my new location but since it was his first store I left then as a gift for him.

I found out yesterday he threw all these things in a garbage! I couldn't believe it. My stores are my home I live there. I only left to help him financially one less thing for him to buy.

I cannot believe he threw away these expensive items, the cameras security system I could have used in my new store or home, and a huge scrolling sign. I did want these things but left them as a gift to help him.

I feel him throwing them out was like throwing out my life work. It's like you giving your child a home with nice furniture you wanted but left cause its they first place. I cried when I found out. So I told him I'm in so upset I'm crying.

Instead of saying sorry he right away started saying its was junk and I could buy the sign anyways for 160. I told him you bring me an advertised price then, of course he couldn't.

Because his sign was custom made last year for 2000.00 I was crying and his response was heartless, he don't understand these things where important I left as a gift for him.

My adult kids go in my bedroom, take my things out if my home, tools laptops what ever they need without permission. My daughter continues to live here. 29 years old with a child.

She moved back 4 months ago I thought to help save money. She reverted back to 15 goes out to eat daily . All her bills are piled up on the counter. She has not saved anything and feels the 300 she gives me is good. My house bills alone doubled.

The 300 don't cover her expense. She eats out daily parties and doesn't clean anything. Works for me making 2000 a month and claims that's not enough. All her money goes on food. My 17 year old is a minor I can't kick him out yes he is the one who takes my things goes into my room even if the door is locked.

Takes what he wants and sells it on Craig's list. His response " you don't use it what's the big speak"? My 21 year old is addicted to drugs she don't work I have to walk around my home carrying my purse. She sleeps all day and has the drug dealer drop her drugs off, yes now a days the drug dealer comes to you. She refuses to stop. I live in a nice area and she brings crazy people around my home to pick her up.

I have kicked her out several times then she does crazy things like sleeps outside. To get sympathy and make it seem like I'm heartless to everyone who knows us. She is my daughter so I cannot tell people the truth because I'm embarrassed.

I bring her to work to babysit and help her stay clean and she will have the drug dealer come to my business. She been in an accident and jail and refuses to stop, YOU cannot get her help because she is an adult and in complete denial. She can get very scary mean and nasty and won't admit she is doing drugs.

My other kids tell me to control her but they won't help. And I'm afraid of her. All of my kids drive cars I paid for.that they trashed. When I say something they all ban against me. They smoke pot in they room. I can smell it and when I say anything they deny it and get really nasty.

Sometimes it's best for me to be quiet. Out of the 4 two work, one I gave a store the other works for me. My one son who is doing best is the most hurtful he wants me to let them all stay here calls me names if I want to kick them out and says I'm a bad mom for wanting to throw my kids out.

He makes me cry all the time and when I tell him he gets more mean and nasty instead of saying sorry. They have unscrewed the lock on my bedroom door I don't even lock it, they have sold on Craig's list and Facebook my laptops drills the we tools iPads phones while I'm at work if they need money, the house doesn't get clean unless I clean and when I cry or lash out they all call me mentally unstable and why do I get worked up.

My one son who is 17 said last night "why r u crying you gave those things to my brother if he threw it out that was his too throw out. Not understanding I only left to help him out I wanted those things, my other daughter stole her sisters car I bought her for 10,000 and lies and said she didn't do it when it's on camera.

The 29 year old don't have credit or even a dollar to buy a new one. These are so many things I go through, the government does not allow me to parent my kids the way I was parented, while growing up.

Talking don't work and if I tried to spank them they called the police, I thought they all would outgrow it as adults but my oldest who is 29 still thinks because I'm the mom that she don't have to move she feels offended that I asked because it's not fair that the others are here.

But my other son is 17 he will call the police he knows his rights I cannot kick him out, my 21 year old drug addict will break a window to get back in,all of these atrocities are against me and they all stand together saying " I'm selfish bad mom for wanting them out when I have a big home.

All of them do drugs, drink don't save money and don't clean the house you believe this story? Because it's all true. But I'm called the psycho one cause I start flipping out when I can't take it trust me no ones kids are that bad.

The new generation.
by: Anonymous

I am sure you have seen irresponsible mothers setting bad examples for the children and caring just about themselves and now the same mothers have children that adore them and run when those "mothers" are in need.

Life is unfair, but don't think that good Mother's gave too much to their children creating their own problems? I think so.

This is my advice with all respect: good Mother's gave too much to create these monsters, right?

So, what about if they do not care for them now and live a happy life caring just about themselves? Get a hobby, make new friends and forget about them.

Be the monsters that they are by not paying attention to them. It could work...

Be happy please! You are the most important person now, not them. You gave all. No more.

Sad Mom
by: Sherry

Thank you anonymous for answering my comment. This past Christmas was the first time I have had a major health issue. My son claims that he loves me, however, he did not see me when this was happening. My daughter never asks me how I am doing.

I have asked them both in the past if I have done anything wrong in raising them. Both have told me that they had the best childhood and that I was the best Mom. I guess there is no answer but I know that I can never depend upon them for anything and I never had before this happened.

There is no excuse for such selfish behavior, but I sincerely do not know how to act at this time towards them. I did send them a loving email expressing my feelings. They never addressed it. I am done discussing this with them. Of course, I love them both and they are responsible good adults. This is so perplexing.

All I know is that I have to take care of myself now and they will have to come second. Anyway, that's it...

Hi Sherry
by: Anonymous

Perhaps your children don't see you as anything but a strong woman. My daughter tends to think I am indestructible, with infinite strength. For them to realize that you are getting older, would also mean that they would have to face their own mortality. Maybe they're not ready to deal with all that entails.

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